A Forest in a Football Stadium
FOR FOREST – The Unending Attraction of Nature is a temporary art intervention by Klaus Littmann that will transform Wörthersee football stadium in Klagenfurt into Austria’s largest public art installation from 8 September – 27 October 2019.
Overseen by Enea Landscape Architecture, around 300 trees, some weighing up to six tons each, will be carefully transplanted over the existing football pitch to give the impression of a central European forest. Once transplanted the forest will take on a life of its own, change colours as the season turns and attract wildlife.
From 10am until 10pm daily (free entry), audiences will experience a unique panorama of trees, day and night, under natural light or by floodlight. Encountering FOR FOREST will trigger a multiplicity of responses and emotions, and depending on the time of day or night the trees will form an ever-changing landscape. This captivating panorama will pave the way for a whole new perspective and understanding of forests.
Austria’s largest art intervention in public space
Inspired by The Unending Attraction of Nature, a dystopian drawing by Austrian artist and architect Max Peintner (b. 1937) that Littmann discovered almost thirty years ago, FOR FOREST finally brings that vision to life.
Through this monumental installation Littmann aims to challenge our perception of nature and question its future. Furthermore, the project seeks to become a memorial, reminding us that nature, which we so often take for granted, may someday only be found in specially designated spaces, as is already the case with animals in zoos.
About Klaus Littmann (Littmann Kulturprojekte)
Klaus Littmann grew up in Basel, Switzerland, studied at Düsseldorf Art Academy with Joseph Beuys and established himself as a mediator of contemporary art.
He made his name through unique solo and group exhibitions positioned in diverse contexts. After many years working within gallery and museum spaces, he started presenting theme oriented art exhibitions in the public arena. Underlying each of his complex and unique projects is a dichotic tension highlighting the artist’s preoccupation with everyday culture and the confrontation between contemporary art and urban spaces.
Modell For Forest “Die ungebrochene Anziehungskraft der Natur”, Maßstab 1:333/3
© Johannes Puch
Klaus Littmann und Max Peintner im Wörthersee Stadion in Klagenfurt (2017)
© Gerhard Maurer
Portrait of Klaus Littmann in the Wörthersee Stadium, Klagenfurt, Austria, 2019
© Emmanuel Fradin
An Image and Its Appeal
Over the years, Max Peintner’s “The Unending Attraction of Nature” has become an icon and food for thought beyond the visual arts.
Known from Textbooks
The artwork has been used in more than 20 German school and textbooks, as well as in publications in France, Denmark, Estonia, Czech Republic and Hungary.
Nowadays, the visionary expressiveness of the image is considered an impetus for philosophy, sociology, biology, ecology, anthropology and literature.
The Wörthersee Stadium
The Wörthersee Stadium is Austria’s most modern stadium, and was officially opened in Klagenfurt in September 2007. The home of the SK Austria Klagenfurt club, the stadium has a capacity of 30,000. In 2008 it played a role in the European Football Championship, and has since hosted other important matches including the 2018 International Champions Cup match between FC Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain. In addition to football matches, the multifunctional arena has been host to special events including an outdoor ice hockey derby, several major concerts, as well as the United World Games and the “Herzschlag 2014” Special Olympics.
The stadium, which complies with all UEFA and FIFA guidelines, is a compact structure which sits comfortably within its surrounding landscape. The architecture of the structure is particularly striking thanks to the dynamic elevation of the roof above the east stand. Further striking features include the close proximity of the tribunes to the football field to create a unique live experience, in addition to the slightly increasing West ramp going towards the stadium, and several stairways that allow access to the stadium on the cornerstones of the platform.
Klagenfurt am Wörthersee
The 800-year-old city was designed by Italian master builders, who shaped the city image with its palaces, courtyard and squares. Walking through this historic place, you may also be tempted for a pleasurable shopping spree. Quaint and airy restaurants and cafés offer invite you to linger, as does the Benedictine Market with its wonderful variety of regional specialties from Carinthian farmers, Slovenian and Italian market vendors.
Klagenfurt am Wörthersee has plenty of museums and galleries. Art lovers will find both established and young, upcoming artists. In the evening, people like to meet in Klagenfurt for classical or jazz concerts, or perhaps watch a play, an opera, or dance theatre.